Ei Group has reported a 2% like-for-like increase in revenue in the 18 weeks to 2 February 2019.
In a trading update, the pub company (Formerly Enterprise Inns) said leased and tenanted business had seen a 2% uptick in revenue after a strong Christmas trading period.
The group's managed estate like-for-like sales grew by 5.7% in the same period.
The company has said it plans to continue converting pubs to its managed estate, which now includes 398 properties, hoping to reach a total of 460 by 30 September 2019.
Simon Townsend, chief executive, said: "The year has started well, with growth being maintained across our operating businesses and, despite the ongoing uncertainty regarding the consumer environment, we are on track to deliver our plans for the year. The proposed disposal of a substantial proportion of our commercial property portfolio is in line with our strategy of unlocking the embedded value from every asset within our business and monetising that value creation for the benefit of all stakeholders."
Last month Ei revealed plans to sell 370 of its commercial properties to Tavern Propco for £348m. A general meeting of shareholders will take place today to consider the proposal, expected to complete in March 2019.
A share buyback programme that has seen Ei return £20m to shareholders was completed on 22 January 2019.Get The Caterer every week on your smartphone, tablet, or even in good old-fashioned hard copy (or all three!).